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Government agency and Fisher-Price warn parents of over a dozen deaths from rockers

The Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker and Newborn-to-Toddler Rocker were tied to at least 13 deaths over a 12-year period.
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
The Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker and Newborn-to-Toddler Rocker were tied to at least 13 deaths over a 12-year period.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Fisher-Price urged parents Tuesday not to let babies fall asleep in rockers, citing at least 13 reported deaths between 2009 and 2021.

"No inclined product, made by Fisher-Price or any other company, is safe for infant sleep," Richard Trumka, a commissioner of the CPSC, said in astatement.

"Only a firm, flat surface is safe," Trumka said.

Fisher-Price, which has sold over 17 million rockers since the 1990s, said the company's Infant-to-Toddler Rockers and Newborn-to-Toddler Rockers accounted for the reported deaths.

The commission also reported at least one death from 2019 involving a Kids2brand rocker. Kids2 has sold over 1.8 million rockers since 2012, according to the CPSC.

The alert comes shortly before a new CPSC rule goes into effect June 23 that requires a sleep surface angle of 10 degrees or less for sleep products.

"Your infant's sleep environment should be the safest place in your home, so we want to remind parents and caregivers: the best place for a baby to sleep is on a firm, flat surface in a crib, bassinet or play yard, without blankets, pillows, or other items," Alex Hoehn-Saric, chair of the CPSC, said in a statement.

"Babies should never be unsupervised or unrestrained in rockers, gliders, soothers, or swings," Hoehn-Saric said.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., called on Fisher-Price and Kids2 to issue recalls Tuesday following the reported deaths tied to their rocker products.

"With more than a dozen infant deaths linked to these dangerous products, it is clear they should be swiftly removed from the market & from unsuspecting families' homes," Blumenthal said in a tweet.

"It is unconscionable that it has taken more than a decade to notify the public about the dangers linked to these rockers after multiple kids' deaths & injuries. Congress must empower the CPSC to issue quicker recalls & warnings by passing the Sunshine in Product Safety Act," Blumenthal added.

The Sunshine in Product Safety Act, which Blumenthal introduced in April 2021, would give the CPSC more room to disclose to consumers information about potential health and safety concerns of certain products without fearing backlash from manufacturers.

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Shauneen Miranda
Shauneen Miranda is a summer 2022 Digital News intern.